David Molesky

Brooklyn, NY


David has a self-proclaimed preoccupation with the magic of painting; the way a gooey substance is transformed into an illusionary image that arouses states of contemplation and empathy. His representational paintings of humans and environments have been featured in many museum exhibitions including the Baltimore Museum of Art, Maryland; Pasinger Fabrik, Germany; Casa Dell’Architettura, Italy; and Telemarksgaleriet, Norway.

David’s paintings are in the permanent collection of the Long Beach Museum of Art among other museum collections on both coasts and in Europe and Asia. He is the recipient of artist residencies through the Morris Graves Foundation, California; Fine Art Base, California; and the Fundacja Nakielska, Poland. Many publications have featured Molesky and his paintings including the LA Times, The Washington Post, OC Weekly, New American Painting, Hi-Fructose, and Juxtapoz.

Molesky on HABITAT

Since earliest memories, my wanderings in natural environments have provided me with the most inspiring lessons. I especially cherish encounters with wild animals. I wanted to learn how they lived and I often imagined how they experienced the world. Sometimes I brought them home for further study — box turtles, painted turtles, rat snakes, pickerel frogs — and made habitats for them in the leaf litter and rainwater in the tarp above our swimming pool or in elaborately designed terrariums I built in my bedroom.


When composing narrative paintings, I treat the spaces around my subjects as I would a terrarium — a constructed environment designed to support their existence. The terrarium habitat also gives viewers an optimally composed view of the subjects’ way of being and attitude towards their surroundings. In these paintings, I am driven to create a sense of atmosphere and space that one could imagine walking into. I later learned that the painters of Rembrandt’s time had a term for this quality, called houding.


My painted subjects, animals and humans alike, exhibit through their body language a sense of awe and harmony within their habitats. My hope is that this empathetic, attentive viewpoint will inspire the viewer to contemplate themselves at peace within the bigger picture outside of the canvas.